The acronym â€œNAT,â€ in computer networking terminology, stands for â€œnetwork address translation.â€ Various NAT types are used for specific purposes. For example, if you plan on adding a video game console capable of online play to your wired or wireless network, you may be required to change your NAT type from its default setting to a new configuration so that the console can properly interface with the Internet. The process of changing the NAT type on your broadband Internet router may sound difficult, but in reality it is surprisingly easy and will only take a few quick moments of your time.
Open Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer or any other Web browser on your computer and type your routers IP address into the address bar. The IP address of your router is similar in concept to a website URL, only instead of being a series of words it is instead a combination of numbers separated by periods. You can find your routers IP address in either the manual or by contacting the person who originally set up your network.
Log in to your router from your Web browser using the default username and password. If you have never changed the username and password for your router, use the information listed in the manual.
If you cannot find the manual, look for the necessary information to be printed on a label somewhere on the router itself. Most of the time the informational label is printed either on the rear panel of the router or on the bottom. If no such label exists, you can also go to the manufacturers website for your router and look for a digital version of the manual for that device. You will need to download and install Adobe Reader if it isnt already running on your computer as most digital manuals are in the PDF file format.
Select the option labeled â€œSettings.â€ Scroll through the list of settings on screen until you see the phrase â€œNAT Type.â€ Click once inside the drop down menu to the right of â€œNAT Typeâ€ and select the option labeled â€œOpen.â€
Note that not all router manufacturers allow you to change the NAT type for your network in this fashion. If you do not see a drop down menu labeled â€œNAT Type,â€ consult the manual that came with your network hardware to find out which ports need to be forwarded for the device to interface with the Internet as intended. Once you have located the required information, enter the appropriate ports into the section of your routers â€œSettingsâ€ page labeled â€œApplications and Gaming.â€
Click â€œSave Changes.â€ Whether you manually changed your NAT type to â€œOpenâ€ or changed your NAT type by opening ports required by your networking equipment, your desired settings will now be changed. Accessing your home network via a piece of networked equipment (like a Blu-ray player, Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 gaming console) will now show that your NAT type is considered by that hardware to be â€œOpen.â€
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